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New Phyrexia
Vault of Whispers.jpg
First seen Mirrodin
Last seen New Phyrexia
Rabiah Scale 5[1]
Status Overcome by the Phyrexians

New Phyrexia is the metal plane previously known as Argentum and Mirrodin, repurposed in its Phyrexian Compleation.[2]

The Phyrexian symbol


Argentum was an artificial world created by the planeswalker Karn, and renamed after the Mirari by its warden Memnarch. The outer sphere of the plane has a circumference of 1400 kilometers, with a diameter of around 450 kilometers.[3] Mirrodin's environments and inhabitants mixed organic and metallic.[4] From sharp razorgrass that grew fast enough to impale unfortunate humans, to oceans that flowed with an unusual form of quicksilver, even the most delicate flower was made of metal. The intelligent beings who walked Mirrodin were no less strange, an odd mish-mash of muscle and steel. Artifact creatures also walk the planet. Some seem to have come about naturally, while some have artificially been created.

Across the surface of Mirrodin, there were five Lacunae, one for each color, in each different landscape on the artificial world.

Spheres of Mirrodin[]

According to Phyrexian Field Reports there now exist three spheres in Mirrodin: the surface, the interior, and the furnaces. The Phyrexians are currently working on adding spheres to it to presumably recreate the original Phyrexia.[5]

The Moons of Mirrodin[]

The plane has five suns (also called moons by some of the plane's inhabitants; it is also notable that each different satellite was regarded with its own folklore by the peoples of Mirrodin), one for each color of mana, though the green sun was absent until late in Mirrodin's history. The names of the moons are: Bringer, the Eye of Doom, Ingle, the Sky Tyrant, and Lyese.

Locations on Mirrodin[]


Artifact creatures[]

  • Golems
  • Memnites, small constructs created by Memnarch
  • Myr, metal automatons created by Memnarch
  • Levelers, machines created by Memnarch to harvest souls
  • Platinum Angels, mysterious beings whose purpose was to fight the Reiver Demons over the dominance of the Mirran skies

Languages spoken[]

  • Goblin [17]
    • Lacks words for "strategy" and "word"



The plane was originally created by the planeswalking golem Karn as the world Argentum.[18] Karn created the plane from an existing but desolate space, using the space as raw materials in the construction of his artificial world.[19][20]

Memnarch's reign[]

Karn left one of his creations, Memnarch (a golem created from the Mirari) in control of the plane when he went out to explore the Multiverse. Unfortunately for Argentum, Memnarch was driven mad by Phyrexian oil[21] that Karn accidentally left in Galdroon Palace, his home on the plane. After being infected, Memnarch was a being forever changed and wished to become a planeswalker like its creator. Memnarch transformed Argentum into Mirrodin, essentially a gigantic terrarium with its own food chain and environmental systems, built to supply organisms that could potentially yield sparks.[22] Memnarch used soul traps to abduct inhabitants from other planes. The abductions went on for centuries. Once Memnarch found such a potential planeswalker, he would take its spark and implant it into himself to achieve planeswalker status.

At some point, mycosynth grew on the plane, a product of the oil, changing metal to organic material, including Memnarch himself. Soon thereafter, Memnarch discovered blinkmoth serum, or lymph, which greatly diminished his decaying sanity, and he became addicted to the substance. Though Karn wished to intervene, Memnarch blocked him from his own world, thinking in his madness that Karn was already there.

The Fifth Dawn[]

Glissa, Bosh, and Slobad and the Kaldra avatar journeyed deep within Mirrodin's core to confront the insidious Memnarch. However, with a single spell, Memnarch seized the avatar and turned it on Glissa and her companions. Kaldra's avatar relentlessly pursued Glissa into the Tangle, destroying everything in its way. Finally, at the Radix, Glissa's destiny became clear. As rage and despair overcame her, Glissa's body called forth a great column of green mana from Mirrodin's core, annihilating the avatar in the process. That mana became the fifth sun of Mirrodin. Memnarch was then deactivated by Glissa. Mirrodin was thereafter guarded by Glissa, Slobad, and Geth.

The Vanishing[]

When Glissa eventually killed Memnarch, all the existing soul traps were destroyed. Upon Memnarch's death, Karn could finally return to his plane. He could restore the souls of everyone that died, using the power of Slobad´s spark to cast the spell. The kidnapped inhabitants were returned to their long-forgotten homes. Almost all of the remaining trolls, half of the elves, and a third of the humans disappeared without a trace. This was known as "The Vanishing" or the Sun's Toll by their descendants, who remained on the plane.[23]

Mirrodin Besieged[]

As Karn had unknowingly brought the glistening oil to Mirrodin, it planted a virus on Mirrodin that slowly spread. The first to be infected had been Memnarch. Unbeknownst to most Mirrans, Phyrexia was rebuilding itself,[24] using the metal structures of their world as its host substrate.

Some Metal-infused inhabitants of Mirrodin were a perfect breeding ground for the spread of Phyrexian corruption, which made them even stronger at the same time that it corroded their minds and bodies. An example of this would be the Darksteel Colossus turning into the Blightsteel Colossus or the Etched Oracle turning into an Etched Monstrosity [25][26] As the nascent civilization of Phyrexia expanded in secret, it struggled to evolve a unified purpose, and the danger for the plane of Mirrodin grew until it evolved into New Phyrexia.

Factionalizing and the Castes[]

The Grand Compleation is achieved.

Unlike in its previous incarnation where Phyrexia fueled itself with colorless artifact mana and the black mana of decay and death, this time the Phyrexians infiltrated all five colors of mana and thus brought war on all fronts. However, this had the unintended consequence of factionalizing the Phyrexians based on their color-alignment.[27][28] And so each alignment gained a Praetor to oversee that color.[29] They are:

  • Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite — The white Praetor of unity. Her philosophy falls in line with the ideal of a fascist, unified theocracy. Currently the dominant praetor.[30]
  • Jin-Gitaxias, Core Augur — The blue Praetor of experimentation. He leads his faction towards subversive experimentation to understand and exploit their enemies.
  • Sheoldred, Whispering One — The black Praetor of enslavement. She is the most traditional leader, believing in wholesale slaughter and subjugation. Recently, her forces have been utterly defeated by Elesh Norn's forces.
  • Urabrask the Hidden — The red Praetor of industry. His philosophy is more industrious than his blue counterpart, building greater and greater artificial monstrosities and weapons. The red mana trait of independence makes this faction the least like the original hive-mind make-up of Phyrexia. Recently, his forces have been utterly defeated by Elesh Norn's forces.
  • Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger — The green Praetor of predation. He believes most in the survival of the fittest and in eugenics, killing those deemed to be weak, and augmenting the great predators of Mirrodin.

The Machine Orthodoxy[]

The white-aligned Phyrexians, under the guidance of Elesh Norn, are a very literalist religious organization called "The Machine Orthodoxy".[31] They worship a form of scripture called the Argent Etchings, but divide themselves into smaller sects. Three of the most prominent sects include The Flesh Singularity, The Porcelain Legion, and the Disciples of Karn. They seek to unify the Multiverse as Phyrexia in either a perfect hierarchy or level playing field.

The Flesh Singularity tries to achieve total unity by literally flaying the creatures that inhabit the lands and sewing them together. The Porcelain Legion repurpose and adapt creatures by implanting white metal plates into their bodies (all white Phyrexians have this porcelain-like metal on their bodies), while the Disciples of Karn previously held Karn himself hostage, in hope of pushing him ever deeper into insanity to glean leadership out of his madness.

The Progress Engine[]

The blue-aligned Phyrexians are led by Jin-Gitaxias from the ruined halls of Lumengrid.[32] They hold themselves to a higher degree of perfection than the other factions, and pursue what they refer to as "The Great Synthesis." They conduct experiments in various laboratories scattered across the Quicksilver Sea, described as "slaughterhouse-like," creating new life forms and technology. They are the most organized group so far, with at least ten observable ranks. One of their great experiments is The Meldweb in which the original Pools of Insight are filled with the brains of hundreds of sentient beings all networked together.

Ezuri, a former bandit turned rebel leader, was captured and compleated by Jin-Gitaxias' forces and turned into the Claw of Progress, putting him in direct conflict with Glissa.[33]

The Seven Steel Thanes[]

The black-aligned Phyrexians are out for total and utter corruption, slaughter, and enslavement. They are led for the moment by Sheoldred.[34] She is at the top of a food chain of warlords known as the Steel Thanes (also known as the Black Thanes[35]), who are all fighting a war of succession to be named Father of Machines. The thanes beside her are:

  • Kraynox, the Deep Thane — Described as masculine, he lords over the corrupting Phyrexian oil and hopes to construct a different fourth layer as a slick, oil-covered vista. Also known as "The Manylegged One".
  • Roxith, Thane of Rot — Described as masculine, he lords over flesh used as a building and sculpting material. He has plans to design the fifth layer of this New Phyrexia made entirely of flesh.
  • Geth, Lord of the Vault — The self-described Thane of Steel, Geth's undead severed head was offered a deal to give him a necro-technical body in exchange for his help in the Phyrexian attempt to gain a foothold on Mirrodin's surface. As his reward, he was returned his lordship over Ish Sah, the Vault of Whispers.
  • Azax-Azog, the Demon Thane — He lords over others with fear and brutality.
  • Thrissik, the Writhing Thane — Described as a snake, he fought Roxith. Believes in an everlasting and ever-improving cycle of destruction and resurrection.
  • Vraan, Thane of Blood — A compleated vampire who leads a group of vampiric assassins.

The Quiet Furnace[]

The red-aligned Phyrexians built the Furnace Layer of Mirrodin, based on a similar layer of Old Phyrexia.[36][37] Their primary function was to tend the forges present there, building weaponry and recycling failed Phyrexians and Mirrans alike. During the war days, they emerged to the surface in the mountains of Mirrodin and expanded onto the surface. While the majority of these Phyrexians still dwell on the depths of the world, several now populate the Oxidda Chain, beasts designed in the fashion of Mirran animals.

Red Phyrexians differ from all others in the way that they have strong emotions and individuality, and as such, developed empathy for the Mirrans. While still brutal creatures, their empathy proved strong enough to allow them to let Mirran survivors dwell on their layer, treating them as if they didn't exist. To hide this secret, as well as to avoid having to deal with other factions, Urabrask demanded that all access to the Furnace Layer be denied to the other factions, isolating himself and his servitors; the surface Phyrexians in the mountains serve as guardians to the entrances to the Furnace Layer. For the most part, the other factions ignore the Quiet Furnace, with the exception of the Progress Engine, which is paranoid about them.

The Vicious Swarm[]

The green-aligned Phyrexians were among the first to strike, dominating the Tangle quickly.[38] Like all Phyrexians, the members of the Vicious Swarm believe that flesh is weak, but unlike the other Phyrexians they believe that New Phyrexia should progress in a more natural way, based on the roles of predation, allowing the strong to emerge triumphant over the weak. They believe that artificial engineering should be restricted to making predators more efficient, and that sentience and sapience are curses, inadequate when compared to the raw power of instinct. Lacking any sort of organization whatsoever, they are merely a massive variety of creatures that kill each other for the purpose of selecting the strongest.

While Vorinclex is the praetor of this faction, it is Glissa who remains the true power. Depending on what source is more canonical (the field guide or the Quest for Karn novel), she is either loyal to Karn or disdains him.

Benzir, a sylvok before compleation, is aligned with this faction, although he is pursuing goals independent of it.

The Mirran Resistance[]

The Mirran symbol

The Mirran Resistance are the remnants of the Mirrans that continued to be alive or uninfected even after the Compleation of Mirrodin. They are composed mainly of Auriok, Vulshok, Goblin, and Leonin survivors together with the last remaining Moriok, Neurok, Sylvok, Elf, Loxodon, and Vedalken inhabitants of the plane.[26] Most of the survivors who are at the later stages of phyresis often die in the camps while they are cared for by those who are less sick, others being the Incorruptable, who are immune to the effects of phyresis. The resistance has no centralized leadership and instead are led by Koth, Elspeth Tirel, the late planeswalker Venser, and others in their respective encampments below:

Mirran holdouts[]

  • Bladehold is an Auriok city in the Razor Fields defended by a force known as the Accorders led by Ria Ivor, Hero of Bladehold. Within its reach lies Razor Circle Passages which were created by Ghalma the Shaper in order to help the survivors access the refugee strongholds in the Furnace Layer. The passages are made up of razor grass "crop circles" activated only during the presence of the white sun.
  • Lowlight is an encampment formed by surviving leonin abunas led by Kemba situated near the Cave of Light. It is surrounded by enchantments that protect it from the intense heat of the Great Furnace. The camp is made from scraps of skin and geometrically-raised crests of the floor's metal. Squealstokes often raid the camp looking for things to burn.
  • Seedling is a camp situated near the Radix. The concept of the name of the camp is based on a story that was told to the camp's leader, Melira, by Thrun about a young tree that grew skyward. Ingot slaves that live near the camp are curious about its existence.
  • Slagmaw is the largest camp in the Great Furnace and is also the safest due to its distance from the other lacunae. The camp is located inside a once-living creature protecting it from the surrounding environs and, in turn, allowing it to be the best outfitted and more protected than the rest.

Aside from those mentioned above, other notable Mirran survivors include Farris, Jor Kadeen, and Kara Vrist.

Forays to other planes[]

Through undisclosed technology, New Phyrexia managed to create a portal to Kaldheim, with the aim of obtaining tyrite, the sap of the World Tree. To these ends they sent Vorinclex, who successfully fulfilled his mission and retrieved a sample, being welcomed by an unknown phyrexian as he returned through the portal.[39]

While on Kaldheim, Vorinclex also infected Tibalt with a "seed", wounded the god Esika, and compleated random people and animals. The effects this will have on the plane remain to be seen.

Some time later, Jin-Gitaxias found a way to the plane of Kamigawa. There, he began working with the Hyozan Reckoners and the Futurist Tameshi in the Towashi Undercity.[40] Through his experiments on kami in Kamigawa, he learned how to compleat a planeswalker without removing their soul, which he put into practice by compleating Tamiyo.[41][42] In response, the Wanderer cut him in two, but his body was recovered by Tezzeret and rebuilt on New Phyrexia.

Current status[]

The Mirran Resistance continues to fight for the eventual purification of Mirrodin. The Sylvok named Melira appeared to be the key to achieving their goal. The Resistance managed to locate Karn and, through the sacrifice of Venser, healed him from the physical and mental damages inflicted upon him by his decades-long exposure to New Phyrexia’s heart and blood and restored his spark. Karn soon left his creation behind in order to seek infestations of Phyrexia on other planes he had visited. The Resistance hoped to use the power vacuum that had been created after Karn left Mirrodin to plunge Phyrexia into a civil war.

It was a vain hope. Elesh Norn took control over the domains of Urabask and Sheoldred, with the praetors (along with the much-despised Tezzeret) gathering to crown a new Father—or Mother—of Machines.[30]

Whatever happened to the Vicious Swarm in Vorinclex's absence remains to be seen.




In-game references[]

Associated cards:
Depicted in:
Referred to:

Notes and references[]

  1. Mark Rosewater (November 29, 2016). "The Rabiah Scale". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  2. Magic Creative Team (April 06, 2011). "A Planeswalker's Guide to New Phyrexia: Introduction". Wizards of the Coast.
  3. According to Will McDermott. Source. For comparison, the diameter of Earth's moon is 3476 kilometers.
  4. a b Rei Nakazawa (September 09, 2003). "Mirrodin Image". Wizards of the Coast.
  5. Gavin Verhey (August 11, 2014). "A Look Inside From the Vault: Annihilation". Wizards of the Coast.
  6. Magic Arcana (March 17, 2004). "Style guide: Mirrodin's interior". Wizards of the Coast.
  7. Magic Arcana (December 02, 2009). "Watching the Panopticon". Wizards of the Coast.
  8. Magic Arcana (October 20, 2003). "Mirrodin Environments: Black". Wizards of the Coast.
  9. Jeremy Cranford (February 03, 2004). "Creating Mirrodin: Swamps and Zombies". Wizards of the Coast.
  10. Magic Arcana (October 30, 2003). "Mirrodin Environments: Red". Wizards of the Coast.
  11. Magic Arcana (April 20, 2004). "Style guide: Mirrodin's red-aligned artifacts". Wizards of the Coast.
  12. Magic Arcana (October 01, 2003). "Mirrodin Environments: White". Wizards of the Coast.
  13. Magic Arcana (October 06, 2003). "Mirrodin Environments: Blue". Wizards of the Coast.
  14. Magic Arcana (November 19, 2003). "Mirrodin Environments: Green". Wizards of the Coast.
  15. Magic Arcana (June 10, 2004). "Lacunae and the Beacons". Wizards of the Coast.
  16. Doug Beyer (November 17, 2010). "The Human Cultures of Mirrodin". Wizards of the Coast.
  17. Goblin Striker
  18. Doug Beyer (September 22, 2010). "The Terms of Engagement". Wizards of the Coast.
  19. According to Will McDermott, Karn created the fabric of the world itself; but, the space it occupies existed prior to his creation. He chose to transform the empty plane rather than attempt to create a fully artificial world.
  20. Will McDermott (January 5, 2006). "Ask the author(s)". MTG Salvation.
  21. According to Will McDermott (source), the original idea was that this was the final (though unfinished) weapon of Yawgmoth, destined for the invasion on Dominaria.
  22. Doug Beyer (February 23, 2011). "Why the Mirrans Will Endure". Wizards of the Coast.
  23. Doug Beyer (December 08, 2010). "The Nonhuman Cultures of Mirrodin". Wizards of the Coast.
  24. Monty Ashley (February 10, 2011). "Phyrexian Rager 2.0". Wizards of the Coast.
  25. Doug Beyer (January 17, 2011). "WAR!". Wizards of the Coast.
  26. a b Doug Beyer (February 09, 2011). "Public Displays of Aggression". Wizards of the Coast.
  27. Doug Beyer (January 26, 2011). "Phyrexia: The Strong and the Scattered". Wizards of the Coast.
  28. Doug Beyer (May 18, 2011). "The Art of New Phyrexia's Factions". Wizards of the Coast.
  29. Doug Beyer (May 11, 2011). "Getting to Know the Praetors". Wizards of the Coast.
  30. a b Jenna Helland (September 11, 2013). "The Lost Confession". Wizards of the Coast.
  31. Magic Creative Team (April 06, 2011). "A Planeswalker's Guide to New Phyrexia: The Machine Orthodoxy". Wizards of the Coast.
  32. Magic Creative Team (April 20, 2011). "A Planeswalker's Guide to New Phyrexia: The Progress Engine". Wizards of the Coast.
  33. Chas Andres (November 3, 2015). "Ezuri's Predation". Wizards of the Coast.
  34. Magic Creative Team (April 13, 2011). "A Planeswalker's Guide to New Phyrexia: The Steel Thanes". Wizards of the Coast.
  35. Elise Kova (March 30, 2022). "Episode 3: Tests". Wizards of the Coast.
  36. Monty Ashley (April 05, 2011). "Mastering the Bomb". Wizards of the Coast.
  37. Magic Creative Team (May 04, 2011). "A Planeswalker's Guide to New Phyrexia: The Quiet Furnace". Wizards of the Coast.
  38. Magic Creative Team (April 27, 2011). "A Planeswalker's Guide to New Phyrexia: The Vicious Swarm". Wizards of the Coast.
  39. Roy Graham (February 03, 2021). "Episode 5: The Battle for Kaldheim". Wizards of the Coast.
  40. Akemi Dawn Bowman (January 24, 2022). "Episode 2: Lies, Promises and Neon Flames". Wizards of the Coast.
  41. a b Akemi Dawn Bowman (January 27, 2022). "Episode 5: Threads of War". Wizards of the Coast.
  42. Mark Rosewater (January 27, 2022). "Will there be an explanation about how Phyrexians can now hold a spark?". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  43. Lora Gray (May 3, 2022). "A Garden of Flesh". Wizards of the Coast.

External links[]